Two SoM Faculty Receive Teaching Honors
Prof. Dan Margalit and Visiting Assisting Professor Gary Lavigne have been awarded the Student Recognition of Excellence in Teaching: 2021 CIOS Award. The award comes with a $1000 prize and recognition of the recipients at the Mach 15th Celebrating Teaching Day on campus.
About the CIOS Award
Funds for the award this year have been provided by the Class of 1934 and the Jack and Frances Mundy endowment accounts. Fifty awards are being made to recognize instructors with exceptional response rates and scores on the Course Instructor Opinion Survey (CIOS). CIOS scores were based on the sum of three scale items: (#16) Instructor’s respect and concern for students; (#17) Instructor’s level of enthusiasm about teaching the course; and (#18) Instructor’s ability to stimulate my interest in the subject matter. Ties were broken by response rate.
Courses taught during Spring 2021, Summer 2021, and Fall 2021 were considered for this award. Each semester, instructors who met the base criteria of 70% response rate and placed in the top 25% of the composite CIOS scores for each size group were eligible for recognition on the Honor Roll. Now 50 members of the Honor Roll with the highest response rates and CIOS scores are being recognized with the 2021 CIOS Award.
Professor Margalit's research lies in the intersection of low-dimensional topology and geometric group theory, with a focus on mapping class groups of surfaces, i.e., the symmetries of surfaces. Prof. Margalit has a long history of excellence in teaching, and he is a previous recipient of several teaching awards including the Eichholz Faculty Teaching Award in 2021 and the Fulmer Award in 2019. Prof. Margalit is also a renowned researcher who recently gave an invited Maryam Mirzakhani Lecture at the JMM in 2022, and is a recent winner of the Conant Prize in 2021 as well as being named a Fellow of the American Mathematical Society in 2019. Prof. Margalit is also an extremely active mentor in the School of Mathematics, helping to guide graduate students and postdocs to successful careers in mathematics, as well as mentoring undergraduates in Research Experiences for Undergrads (REU's) with four successful REU programs with co-mentors Wade Bloomquist, Yvon Verberne, and Nancy Scherich, in the Summer of 2021 alone.
Dr. Michael Gary Lavigne is the Assistant Director of Communication, Education, and Outreach for the Southeast Center for Mathematics and Biology (SCMB) and a Visiting Assistant Professor in the School of Mathematics. Dr. Lavigne has research interests at the intersection of mathematics and biology, especially reaction-diffusion systems, cellular automata, and spacial strategies of the interferon response. Dr. Lavigne received his PhD in Applied Mathematics at North Carolina State University in 2020. Dr. Lavigne was also the recipient of the Class of 1934 CIOS Honor Roll Awards for Spring 2021.